For many lovelorn singletons, the holidays are the loneliest time of year and, in the New Year, the billion online dating industry sees a surge in users.
Sign-ups on OKCupid, part of IAC Corp., were up 30% this past Sunday, a spokeswoman for the parent company said. Many singles sit around the family dinner table during the holidays and think, ‘Maybe it would be better to have a partner,’” says Mark Brooks, a dating-industry analyst and the editor of Online Personals Watch.
“That’s when they start hitting dating sites in droves and go on dates before the indigestion sets in.” It may also be more polite to arrange dates in the New Year rather than during the holidays, especially with family around.
“They’re going to be around for you long after your relationships,” he says.
“The trick with holiday dating is to make sure no one feels neglected.” Of course, dating apps also have a surge in activity any time millions of people are off work at the same time, such as the first Sunday of the year.
But here is a more extreme example: During the first and second week of the federal government shutdown in October 2013 when 800,000 federal employees were furloughed, the number of times Zoosk members played Zoosk’s “Carousel” game increased by 92% and actual clicks on profiles surged by 110%.